2013 Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon Preview – Will A Debutante Shine Yet Again?

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The 2013 running season begins in earnest tonight – will a talented veteran like Martin Lel win or will a newcomer steal the show?

*Watch Live For Free Starting at 9 PM ET (Race starts at 10 pm ET)

By LetsRun.com
January 24, 2013

December and January are lean months for running fans as not much of significance happens in the two months after Thanksgiving in the US. But we’ve got good news. The off-season unofficially ends tonight.

In recent years, the new year and new season has seemingly begun at the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon and the 2013 edition  takes place tonight at 10 pm ET (7:00 am Friday Dubai time). Thanks to a generous prize fund that is fast approaching $1 million, Dubai has become a big race.

Last year’s Dubai action was stunning. The 2012 Dubai Marathon was the fastest marathon in history by far. 4 men broke 2:05, 8 broke 2:06 and 15 broke 2:09 as the fastest-ever times for places were recorded in spots three through 17.

Defending men’s champ Ayale Abshero (2:04:23) is injured and not back to defend his title and 2:03:06 man Moses Mosop was a late scratch as “family problems’ have kept in Kenya.

But that doesn’t mean Dubai isn’t stacked. There are twelve sub-2:08 guys in the field including:

Matin Lel photo

Martin Lel after winning the 2007 London Marathon.
*More 2007 London Marathon Photos

Martin Lel – One of the all-time greats in marathoning. Before Sammy Wanjiru arrived as a star at the 2008 Olympics, the biggest star in the world of marathoning was Kenya’s Martin Lel. Lel won London three times – 2005, 2007 amd 2008 – and that 2008 win came at the expense of Wanjiru. He won New York two times – 2003 and 2007. He’s getting up there in age and is veyr injury prone as he missed basically all of 2009 and 2010, but when he does race, watch out. He was 2nd in London last spring.

Yemane Adhane (also known as Yemane Tsegay) – Rotterdam winner at 2:04:27 last year.

Dadi Yami – Ran 2:05:41 last year in Dubai  to get 6th. Was 8th in Chicago in 2:07:43.

There is another guy in the field of note who has never broken 2:10 but is of note – 2:10:13 man Moses Masai – the bronze medallist in the 10,000 at the 2009 world champs (the IAAF preview of the race says Masai is making his debut – that is false. He’s run several marathons).

More interesting is the fact there a number of very interesting debutantes to pay attenton to. Afterall, remember last year Ayale Abshero’s win last year came in his debut (the fastest debut ever on a records-eligible course).

We aren’t the only one’s excited about the guys making their debuts. Ryan Hall’s coach Renato Canova recently wrote on Alberto Stretti’s blog, “i am focused on some important debuts as Lelisa Desisa (59’30 on half) told me in great shape from my ethiopian friends, Mike Kigen (60’18 in GreatNorthRun), Bernard Koech (Ken) and Nicholas KipKemboi (Ken)who i have seen live as winner in SevenHillsLoop in Nijmegen(Hol) last november and i was absolutely impressed by him.”

Let’s take a look at each of those newcomers:

Photo of Lelisa Desisa

Lelisa Desisa getting 2nd in Hengelo in 2012 – just .28 behind eventual bronze medallist Tariku Bekele.
*More 2012 Hengelo Photos

Lelisa Desisa – Last year, the 23-year old twice ran under 27:20 on the track for 10,000 including at Hengelo where he was just .28 behind eventual bronze medallist Tariku Bekele. In 2011, twice ran in the 59:30s for 13.1 in 2011. If he’s name sounds familiar, it may be because he made a name for himself on the US road scene in 2010 and 2011. In 2011, he won more than $18,000 in a single weekend as he smashed the 16-year old course record at Washington, DC’s Cherry Blossom Run by running 45:36 – the day after winning $10,000 at the Cooper Bridge Run. In 2010, he won Bolder Boulder and Boilermaker (More: What can anyone tell me about Lelisa Desisa).

Mike Kigen – The 27-year old ran 27:03 in Brussels last year. He has a 59:58 half pb and ran 60:18 at the Great North Run in September. He’s run 12:58 for 5000 as well and was 5th at World XC in 2006.

Bernard Koech – The 22-year old Kenyan twice broke 60:00 last year including a 59:10 showing in Lille that made him the 19th fastest 13.1 man in history.

Nicholas Kipkemboi – Our results database –http://www.tilastopaja.org – shows zero results for the relatively unkown Kenyan before 2012. In Berlin in April, he ran 60:15 for the half. Then the  Kenyan put up a big result at the 15km Seven Hills race in Njmegen in the Netherlands on November 18th as he defeated the world record holder at 15km, Leonard Komon, by 17-seconds. The race garnered little attention on LetsRun or in the US as it was held on the same day as NCAA cross country but Canova was there and impressed.

It should be an interesting race to watch and best of all you can watch it all at a reasonable time and for free. Watching HSers at the Armory may now cost you $20 but you can watch the world’s best for free from a television quality broadcast. The marathon starts at 10 PM ET tonight but race coverage begins at 9 pm ET.

The women’s race isn’t as strong as the men’s as it only features five sub-2:25 performers. Tirfi Tsegaye twice ran 2:21 last year (won in Paris, 2nd in Berlin) and is the favorite in terms of seasoned marathoners. But the IAAF preview says Federico Rosa likes the chances of his athlete Ayalew Wude who is debuting and we can see why. Wude – the 2009 world championship bronze medallist at 10,000 – has run 14:38/30:11 and 67:58 for 5/10 and 13.1.

Below you will see the updated elite fields for both men and then what we believe is the prize money the prize money.

More: MB: Official 2013 Dubai Marathon Discussion Thread
*MB: What can anyone tell me about Lelisa Desisa
*IAAF Preview of 2013 Dubai
*2013 Dubai Marathon Media Guide

Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon 2013                    
Elite Athletes MEN    
BIB    Name    Country    Bib Name    PB
1    Yemane Tsegay Adhane    Ethiopia    TSEGAY    2:04:47
2    Dadi Yami Gemeda    Ethiopia    YAMI    2:05:41
3    Philip Kimutai Sanga    Kenya    SANGA    2:06:07
4    Sisay Jisa Mekonnen    Ethiopia    JISA    2:06:27
5    Tadese Tola Woldegeberel    Ethiopia    TOLA    2:06:31
6    Chela Dechase Beyene    Ethiopia    DECHASE    2:06:33
7
8    Eshetu Wendimu Tsige    Ethiopia    WENDIMU    2:06:46
9    Isaac Macharia Wanjohi    Kenya    MACHARIA    2:07:17
10    Hailu Mekonnen Legesse    Ethiopia    MEKONNEN    2:07:35
11    Gemechu Worku Biru    Ethiopia    BIRU    2:07:43
12    Stephen Chebogut    Kenya    CHEBOGUT    2:08:02
13    Berhanu Shiferaw Tolcha    Ethiopia    SHIFERAW    2:08:51
14    Evans Kiplagat Barkowet    Kenya    BARKOWET    2:09:22
15    Endeshaw Negesse Shumi    Ethiopia    NEGESSE    2:09:59
16    Moses Ndiema Masai     Kenya    MASAI    2:10:13
17    Azmeraw Bekele Molalign    Ethiopia    BEKELE    2:10:25
18    Cosmers Kibet Kemboi    Kenya    KEMBOI    2:10:33
19    Tesfaalem Gebrearegawi Mehari    Ethiopia    GEBRE    2:10:35
20    Habtamu Assefa Wakeyo    Ethiopia    ASSEFA    2:10:55
21    Yakob Jarso Kintra    Ethiopia    JARSO    2:11:13
22    Girmay Birhanu Gebru    Ethiopia    BERHANU    2:12:51
23    Afewerk Mesfin Woldetensae    Ethiopia    MESFIN    1:01:50 H
24    Bernard Kiprop Koech    Kenya    KOECH    59:10 H-DB
25    Lelisa Desisa Benti    Ethiopia    DESISA    59:30:00
26    Mike Kipruto Kigen    Kenya    KIGEN    59:58 H
27    Belay Asefa Bedada     Ethiopia    BEDADA    60:59 H
28    Nicholas Kipkemboi    Kenya    KIPKEMBOI    DEBUT
29    Mohammed Delile Awol    Ethiopia    AWOL
30    Ahmed Gobena Gemeda    Ethiopia    GEMEDA
31    Kelali Negusse Abrha    Ethiopia    NEGUSSE
32    Dereje Tesfaye Gebrehiwot    Ethiopia    GEBREHIWOT    2:08:36
33    Legesse Lamiso Yoota    Ethiopia    LAMISO
34    Andualem Belay Shiferaw    Ethiopia    SHIFERAW    60:10 – H
35    Wosen Zeleke Demse    Ethiopia    ZELEKE
36    Herpasa Negasa Kitesa    Ethiopia    KITESA
37    Gebrekidan Egziabher Abadi    Ethiopia    ABADI

40    Tsegaye Mekonnen Asefa    Ethiopia    MEKONNEN    PACE
41    David Kemboi Kiyeng    Kenya    KIYENG    PACE

50    Birhanu Dare Kemal    Ethiopia    KEMAL    PACE
51    Bekele Adugna Taffa    Ethiopia    ADUGNA    PACE
52    Hussen Gose Betusa    Ethiopia    GOSE    PACE
53    Timon Kiplagat Biwott    Kenya    BIWOTT    PACE
54    Kasim Adilo    Ethiopia    ADILO    PACE

Elite Athletes WOMEN    
W1    Tirfi Tsegaye Beyene    Ethiopia    TSEGAYE    2:21:19
W2    Mamitu Daska Molisa    Ethiopia    DASKA    2:21:59
W3    Koren Jelela Yal    Ethiopia    JELELA    2:22:43
W4    Issabellah Andersson    Sweden    ANDERSSON    2:23:41
W5    Amane Gobena Gemeda    Ethiopia    GOBENA    2:24:13
W6    Shitaye Bedasa Ordofa    Ethiopia    BEDASA    2:25:09
W7    Alevtina Ivanova    Russia    IVANOVA    2:26:38
W8    Kateryna Stetsenko    Ukraine    STETSENKO    2:27:51
W9    Misaki Katsumata    Japan    KATSUMATA    2:28:01
W10    Beata Naigambo    Namibia    NAIGAMBO    2:29:20
W11    Ehitu Kiros Reda    Ethiopia    KIROS    2:33:43
W12    Abebech Afework Bekele     Ethiopia    AFEWORK    2:39:05
W13    Leila Luik    Estonia    LEILA LUIK    2:40:12
W14    Liina Luik    Estonia    LIINA LUIK    2:45:02
W15    Belaynesh Oljira Jemama    Ethiopia    OLJIRA    1:07:27 H
W16    Wude Ayalew Yimer     Ethiopia    AYALEW    1:07:58 H
W17    Aheza Kiros Abeye    Ethiopia    KIROS    69:10 H

Prize Money:

1st200,000200,000
2nd80,00080,000
3rd40,00040,000
4th20,00020,000
5th12,00012,000
6th11,20011,200
7th10,40010,400
8th9,6009,600
9th8,8008,800
10th8,0008,000